Michael Lumb Gets His Just Rewards

May 24 2009

Lumb

There have been some very special – and very large – scores from Hampshire batsmen recently, but during the Friends Provident Quarter Final Michael Lumb made his first one day century at The Rose Bowl.

“I’ve wanted to get one here for a long time” he said afterwards. “To get one in front of the home crowd was really special. As a group of batters we’ve hit some form, which is nice; the timing’s good – the game at Notts we had to win and the game here too. We all work hard and we put the hours in so it’s good to get some rewards!

“When you open an innings you have to take some risks now and then – you need a gambler at the top of the order to get the board going quickly, so sometimes you’ll get out. But I think I’m learning now that you can knock the ball around and keep on batting.”

Michael was complimentary about his teammates too – and rightly so, because although his century set up the Quarter Final, the win itself came through a good all round performance. “We’re a good unit up there” he said pointing to the dressing room “We get on well and we work really hard. A win like this is very special for us. In the context of the game our opening partnership was pretty big – to be out there and set the tone by putting them under the pump early on. I think Jimmy played really well and we dovetailed quite nicely – it was the same at Trent Bridge [when Hampshire beat Nottinghamshire in the last group game].  I’ve been up and down with a few noughts – but I’ve been hitting the ball pretty well and I felt in good touch. There’s a lot of talent in the Hampshire dressing room so you never rest on your laurels – you have to stay focussed.”

And had the fact that Shaun Udal was leading Middlesex added any spice to the victory? “It’s always nice to see Shaggy and I’m sure he’ll be disappointed” Michael said. “We’re mates – but you’ve got to beat him at the end of the day. That’s how it is. I was very surprised when he took the new ball [Udal bowled a solitary first over]– it caught me right off guard! I thought he could have bowled with it a bit more to be honest. He’s got me a few times in the nets so I think he wanted to burgle me out – but there was no way – if I was going to have to block out five maidens he wasn’t going to do it!”

MichaelLumb

Naturally Hampshire captain Nic Pothas was delighted with Lumb’s success. “Over the years Lumby’s been a dominant force for us in one day cricket but he’s been the kind of guy who’s got in really well, and then, by his own admission, thrown it away. It’s something we’ve been working on and in today’s innings he’s matured by two or three years. It would have been very easy for him to go in and smash a ball around on a good deck, but today he put his heart and his ego in his pocket. Once he gets to forty or fifty people forget about getting him out, and if he just has that discipline of just knocking it around they’re actually handing him a hundred. I think today has been a massive turning point in his career and he played awesomely and set up a win for us.”

Before the game Nic talked a great deal about making plans. Had he had to adapt them at all? “Not much, to be honest. It helps when you know sides pretty well. We play Middlesex fairly often and we know Shaggy very well having played with him. We executed very well up until his last three overs, but in the end I like to fact that they had to adjust to us rather than us to adjust to them – it’s a positive thing for us. Our side’s maturing very quickly. They’re executing and the players are reading the game on their own – which is exactly where I want them to be.”

Post match interviews by Jane Cable.


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